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A House Divided

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Abraham Lincoln faced a divided nation when He addressed the Illinois Republican Convention in 1858. He was embroiled in a race for the U.S. Senate with Stephen Douglas at the time, and many thought the speech he was to make was too radical for his election. Quoting Jesus, he said “a house divided cannot stand,” believing that the United States would not remain divided; ultimately, we would be all slave or all free. Interestingly, he had never won an election before, and he lost this one, but his stand for unmoderated truth gave him victory in the only election that he ever won, President of the United States.

That message resounds today. Will the United States choose to become a socialistic, atheistic society that controls every aspect of our lives by promising to take care of us, or will she return to her founding principles of liberty and the rule of law, one nation under God? Will our politicians have the courage to stand on the principles that made our country what it is or will they compromise, thinking that will appeal to moderate voters? I believe that we have a chance in the next few months to return to the principles that made us America. Scott Walker’s victory in Wisconsin was a sign that we’re waking up.

On election night in Wisconsin, one young man was on all the cable channels crying, “Democracy died!”, but I say the republic inhaled a breath of life. Can someone explain to me how allowing an individual worker the choice not to have union dues deducted from his salary is the death knell of democracy? Sounds like individual liberty to me. I understand that without the dues of the workers who opted out of the union, the union bosses in the state have about half as much money to elect politicians to do their bidding. Certainly their political power and that of the politicians they’re controlling has been diminished, but the freedom of the individual worker as well as the economic health of the state has been resurrected.

Why did that recall even come about? Was there corruption, scandal, malfeasance of office? No, Scott Walker was doing what he promised to do in his campaign, what the majority of voters elected him to do. Once the votes are counted in a democratic republic, the candidate chosen by the will of the people governs until the next election. Isn’t that democracy? Since the vote wasn’t close enough for law suits, the opposition chose to force a recall at a cost to the taxpayers of millions of dollars. We used to call that being a “sore loser” on the playground, but, it seems like a much greater threat to democracy to me.

Are we so used to politicians telling us what we want to hear, and then doing just the opposite, that we don’t expect someone to have the courage of convictions? I pray that our presidential candidates this year will stand on one side or the other. If you believe socialism is best for America, say that. If you believe that a free people must be responsible for their own lives and be given the liberty to accomplish their dreams without government intrusion, say that. I really am tired of luke-warm, focus group tested rhetoric from Madison Avenue politicians. Take a clue from Scott Walker and Abraham Lincoln. Americans want our leaders to lead. We can no longer compromise principle; our republic depends on it.

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